Christ Church Savannah files appeal to the Georgia Supreme Court

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Leaders of Christ Church in Savannah have asked the state's top court to review a July 8 Court of Appeals decision that the church's historic downtown property belongs to the Episcopal Church.

On Wednesday, Christ Church officials appealed to the Georgia Supreme Court a recent ruling of the Georgia Court of Appeals upholding Judge Michael Karpf’s decision issued in October 2009 against Christ Church and in favor of the Diocese of Georgia and The Episcopal Church.

That decision upheld the plaintiff’s argument that Christ Church holds its property in trust for the Diocese and the national church, based on a 1979 national church canon.

The church had until Wednesday to file documents with the Supreme Court asking it to review the case.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: Georgia* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues

Posted July 30, 2010 at 5:19 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. flaanglican wrote:

TEC goes out of it’s way to deny that they are a “national church”.  Hence, no longer “ECUSA” but “TEC”.  Except, when they try to win in court, of course.  Hyprocrites.

July 30, 6:08 pm | [comment link]
2. NoVA Scout wrote:

No.1:  I don’t think the Church’s status (or not) as a “national church” had much to do with the decision upholding ownership of Christ Church in Savannah.  The adverse result for those who are attempting to claim the property would have been the same had the Church been a statewide or local organization.

July 31, 7:09 am | [comment link]
3. 4PAWS wrote:

It will be over when God decides it is over.  This battle that we are in here at Christ Church is taking place all over the world.  It is persecution for the gospel.  Like it or not, this is when we grow in the Lord.  This time is about trusting in Him (Deut 31:6, Psalm 112:7,8, Isaiah 26:3,4), being patient (Psalm 37:7), finishing well (Isaiah 40:31, Heb 10:36).  This battle is God’s battle (2nd Chron 20:15) not ours.  He just calls us to trust Him and give Him our hearts.  He provides all we need.  Whatever the outcome, I can claim Romans 8:28 with all my heart.  With His provisions for us, we will finish well.  Please pray for us as we pray for you in your battlefield.

July 31, 9:42 am | [comment link]
4. Pb wrote:

Christ Church was not persecuted for the gospel. They could have chosen to fight rather than leave. There was never much doubt about the outcome of the litigation. But the leadershiip chose this path and this is a great congregation which will be continue to proclaim the gospel wherever they are.

July 31, 10:11 am | [comment link]
5. NoVA Scout wrote:

Who was persecuted?

July 31, 2:54 pm | [comment link]
6. 4PAWS wrote:

We must have a different opinion of the meaning of persecution.  No, we are not being stoned, burned at the stake, etc… but we have been slandered, personally sued and risk the confiscation of our church.  Stay and fight?  For several years we did until we had no other choice.  The outcome of the litigation has not yet been determined.  Heb 11: 17-31 recounts many acts of God which were “against the odds”.  With His help, we are just trying to be faithful.  It is a win/win situation.

August 1, 3:49 am | [comment link]
7. NoVA Scout wrote:

I’ve heard a fair amount of exaggeration in both directions, but I would be hard-pressed to say that the rhetoric of those staying in the church has been more over-heated than the words and accusations of those who left.  It is, of course, impossible to measure such things empirically.  None of this rises to the level of “persecution”, and to so contend does an injustice to and cheapens the memory of those who have paid with their lives in horrific ways for their faith, both in the early days of the church and through the centuries up to the present.  “Persecution” is a political term when used in this context used to create a sense of cohesion and solidarity within factions.  It is a cheap word to use here. 

As far as “risking confiscation of our church”, did you expect anything different when you made the decision to leave?  I would think any rational person contemplating departure would know that it would be unlikely that those who stay would acquiesce in handing over keys, accounts, and buildings.  As far as those who elected not to leave, cannot they say that the church is “our church”?  I would not expect that anyone whose conscience told them that it was necessary to separate from the Episcopal Church would have the slightest hesitation or surprise at the prospect of building a new worship place once they have departed.  I think the situation you are in is a totally avoidable lose/lose situation (unless you happen to be a lawyer representing one side or the other).

August 1, 8:52 am | [comment link]
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